UPDATE: 90-year-old dies at Diamond fire, granddaughter had just left home

Inews, this morning, 2 were reported to have died in the Diamond Housing Scheme fire, however, new information shows that only one person died.

The dead person is identified as 90-year-old Rupert Mc Lean Williams.

Reports are that the fire started about 8:30h in the back room of the house.

Relatives suspect the man, an amputee, may have started the fire while trying to light a cigarette.

Williams’s daughter-in-law, Dorsett McLeod-Solomon, said Inews that her daughter was at home with her father-in-law but had just left to go to a nearby shop. However, when he returned, he saw the entire building engulfed in flames and subsequently summoned Guyana Fire Service.

McLeod-Solomon said William last night was upset over his pension book because they were having some issues transferring him from Fort Wellington to Diamond. Her husband would have tried to do so in December 2020 but was unsuccessful.

The woman, who lives abroad with her family, said she stayed behind to make sure her father-in-law could be cared for and was in the process of screening a carer for him.

“We got somebody who came like three days ago and we started screening the person because we can’t pass it on to someone just like that … he was sleeping on a flat bed on the floor because he rolled down twice out of bed and I told him ‘Dad I can’t afford to lose you’ so I put him flat and tell him you will fall on the ground anytime you fall and we can work with that, “he said.

The woman added that she was in the Ministry of Human Services and Social Security this morning trying to sort out her pension book when she received the terrible news.

“He had asked my daughter to buy him a pack of cigarettes and I told him he shouldn’t smoke and I even called the neighbors and said that my dad and I were getting into a problem because I tell him not to smoke. The last thing he said to me was ‘I’m not a little boy, don’t talk to me how you want, you think I’m my mother’. I told him I couldn’t take in the smell of the smoke, ”he said.

Investigations are ongoing.